As I write this sadness overflows from my heart… The jugs of my eyes pregnant with tears… It has been a terrible day my love… Terrible… I lost my phone ON A FUCKIN MATATU! This was on my way to work this morning! When I got to the office I tried calling it even though I knew it was off by the time… Not correct… The call went through but no one picked up… I called countless times until Mwangi picked up!
I am really sorry if this sounds tribalistic, but when he said his name was Mwangi… I gave up all hope of ever getting it back. Again I apologise!
Mwangi was cool though, he said he picked my phone on the matatu seat and wants to give it back… But for me to get it, I was to meet him at Umoja Two near the chief’s office…
I called the office courier and told him to rush to Umoja Two… I kept calling my phone and chatting with Mwangi just so he doesn’t change his mind… I was astound that he wanted to give the phone back though… It was a really cool phone and I would have understood completely if he thought otherwise.
People kept calling Mwangi asking for me. He told all of them that he had picked my phone and is waiting for me to pick it. Two hours later the courier guy had not met up with him and I started to panic… Two minutes later the thing was off! And that was that!
I HATE MATATUS!
*I am listening to Butu na moyi by Makoma as I type this*
I can see your faultless face as I write this letter. I do not have countless words to express what I have for you… I am no poet so I can’t even make the few words I have rhyme with each other to inflate the love I have for you… But suppose I say that absolute and unquestioning love is a chord of many notes – then at present I have not all the notes, as I do not know all of you, but I have a few notes for everything I know about you which sound amazing to my big African ears; I have enough notes to make a harmony my Doris, enough to dance each time you cross my mind… I am afraid I now look like a mad man because I can’t stop dancing! It was those few notes that have made me love you this much… Love with no end yani! I want to love you absolutely, to find the other notes – that will come with deeper knowledge of your lovely nature. Your tiny feet play lingala… Your yelo yelo skin soft rhythm and blues, your intelligence afro fusion… Your plus sizeness rock! I am ready to dance forever!
I took a bus to town from work the other day. It was about 8pm.
Alexander Muge like always took me up until where I get my matatus. He then made sure I had my bus fare before he left. I gave the makanga my money before even the matatu started moving.
I sat at my usual spot at the co driver’s seat. I then made sure I still had all my valuables after a walk across the CBD that, by the way, crawls with pick pockets and bad people… My wallet was intact… My phone was intact and my Macbook was in place…
I always sit at the front because:
I can keep an eye on the driver. I really want to be the one to save the day in case he loses control or falls asleep or something close to that… or maybe just be the first to know when the plane is going down so I can dive out of the vehicle! And the leg room is just amazing compared to the rest of the matatu where you have to tuck your feet under the seat for you to fit!
I like sitting at the window but people who are stronger or more persistent always take this away from me. Like last night… this really rough dark man with matofaris for a chest, got in and just pushed me over using his ass… I did not fight back. You would not have either if you saw his face… His mandibles were solid and square! Ignoring his brick wall of a torso, his arms were the size of an axle for a small car, he had no hair at all on his head and you could almost see reflections of the city lights from outside on it! He had a neatly trimmed beard. He was wearing a white fitting t-shirt that complimented the excessively zero fat body. The tight t-shirt was tucked into a pair of dark jeans and held in place with a thick belt probably made from a Zebu cow. He tucked his jeans in army boots… or watchman boots… still they were black and shiny.
He had a tiny phone. One of those Nokias with torches… or is it torches with Nokias?! The phone even looked smaller because the palm of them man’s hand were the size of a small satellite dish… as in, they looked like he could hold a gas meko like a glass! With palms as vast as that, you probably need a tablet and nothing else!
His sun glasses were hung disgustingly on his reggae coloured neck sequence of beads that had a yellow lion holding a flag.
On his other hand was an A5 envelope written Club Seventy Seven, that had been crossed off and just below it in unschooled handwriting written: Sebastian M.
What I got from this intel was that he was definitely a bouncer at a club called Club Seventy Seven… but who am I to judge?!
Just before the matatu left I spotted, AND THIS IS NO LIE, Genevieve getting into the same matatu! She was not in her neon haute couture. She was dressed very well actually! A black dress with multiple polka dots the size of the rim of a glass. On her feet were little flat black shoes that had a white bow at the top! She did not have a hand bag this time… Instead, she had a tiny red wallet.
If she was not holding a packet of ILARA fresh milk with a straw sticking out of it she would have been, well, better than the last time! I don’t know about you but there is a peculiar crudeness in walking around sucking fresh milk off a straw from a polythene bag! Yes?
Anyways, Genevieve got into the matatu and that was that…
I was back to my terrible habits of reading people’s texts in the matatu… The mountain sitting next to me had been texting non-stop all through the ride… So I decided to find out what ‘bouncers’ or whatever he was, say on short message service!
This was a bit tricky because if by any chance he would catch me glimpse at his phone screen he would snap my neck effortlessly! There is this quiz I took on Facebook called, “When Will I Die!” I got between 65 and 70 years!There was no way I was going to compromise that just because I was reading someone’s texts carelessly… I had to do it S.W.A.Tly!
The first text I saw was an incoming text,”Tomorrow maybe.”
I already liked the person who was texting this mountain because whoever they were, they spelt every word entirely and correctly!
Then the beast replied within the next second with visible anger…,”Why not today…” But he did not send it… He thought for a minute… Then added,”Why not today Baibe!”
It was evident at this point that we were dealing with a nit! WHAT THE HELL IS BAIBE!!!?
I had already created a story of what the two might be talking about… They were definitely discussing a meeting! But the person on the other side was not feeling this plan… The one sitting next to me was terrible at asking for a meet up if he thought miss spelt pet names would work… The person on the other side had the upper hand because his/her every text worried this man!
“I can’t and you know why!” A reply came in…
I was so engrossed in this conversation that I forgot I was supposed to be doing this in secret! One can always feel when their texts are being read… More often when they are talking about things they should be talking about behind closed doors and dimmed lights!
The man caught me red handed… I am blind, so I tend to concentrate hard on things… He caught me at this point. I had gotten so close my head was almost under his chin!
Luckily he did not snap my neck like I had envisioned… He instead bumped me with his elbow. My heart sunk! I looked at his face blankly as I waited for him to flatten my face! I shot back to my initial upright position and ignored his very existence… I tend to believe surprise neck breaks are less painful!
“Umekosa form!” He said and looked at me straight in the eye… His brows slightly dipped! By this moment I had not breathed in or out for almost a minute!
I understood what he said…
I did not apologise though… Apologising confirms that you actually committed the crime… I was not going to warrant my own death! I ignored him… And set my eyes forward… Like I was the one operating the auto mobile…
I could see him texting from the side of my eye but the rims to my glasses were blocking my view…And I couldn’t move my head…
I got a glimpse of ‘Sweethart’ and ‘way’. I almost told him to go through the text one more time to catch stupid errors but something told me this was a bad idea.
He was getting visibly annoyed with every text that came in… He was replying faster this time… The texts were getting shorter and shorter… I think he had enough when he decided to call the person on the other side.
I could hear the phone ring multiple times before the person on the other side received the call… Then did not say a word… For like two seconds then the mountain went like, “Hello!”
“Yeah!” A woman’s voice from the other side…
“Sielewi…” He continues!
“I have explained everything Sebah…” an innocent voice from the other side, loud like gun shots in the silent matatu… I was holding my breath so I could get every word. The man noticed this and lowered the phone volume until I could not hear anything at all.
A lot of un-interesting things were exchanged over the phone… I couldn’t hear but I have to tell myself this in order not to feel like shit for missing a thoroughly enthralling conversation.
The man got off at a random stop completely un-amused!
And that was that…
I was the last one to leave the matatu…
Just as I was getting off, the makanga tapped my back violently and said… “Ebu chukua hii namba! Nimeambiwa nikupe! Zero seven seven… Haraka… Saa mbaya…”
It was Genevieve’s… I took it and saved it as ‘Local Talent’.